NFL Snap Count Breakdown: Week 7
Andrew Cooper pores over the data and breaks down the NFL snap counts from Week 7 and highlights players that need to be on your radar.
In this article we break down the snap counts of all the fantasy relevant players for each week. Each team has a snap count chart with the percentage of total snaps played and below that you will find notes for each position group on anything that author Andrew Cooper found interesting (which running backs played more pass downs, whether tight ends ran routes or blocked on pass plays, which wide receivers lined up in the slot, who might have been injured, etc.). For more analytics driven fantasy takes, follow Andrew Cooper on Twitter @CoopAFiasco.
|Jeff Wilson Jr.||RB||37||56.1%|
|Richie James Jr.||WR||16||24.2%|
WR: Big news here is that Deebo Samuel left with a hamstring strain which is supposedly Grade 1 which would have him out for two to three weeks Deebo had been playing more slot snaps the last couple weeks with Bourne moving outside. Based on the usage after Samuel’s injury, Bourne should move back into the slot with Richie James Jr. outside. James played only 5 WR snaps week 6 and in week 7 he played 16, none in the slot.
RB: With Mostert on injured reserve, Jeffrey Wilson provided to be the hot hand this week. That was until he left the game with what looked like a high ankle sprain. Now reports are that he too should miss multiple weeks. Based on this week’s usage, Jamycal Hasty should get some early down work and Jerick McKinnon should skew passing downs though, in this offense, the hot hand can take the job and run with it at any time.
TE: George Kittle , all the time. Only other thing to mention here is Jordan Reed ’s inevitable return. It shouldn’t affect Kittle’s production but running 2 tight end sets would likely take away from Kenrick Bourne’s snaps, when Samuel is back.
|Allen Robinson II||WR||50||79.4%|
|Ted Ginn Jr.||WR||4||6.3%|
WR: Same set up they’ve used for awhile now. Allen Robinson and Darnell Mooney play the two outside positions (split end and flanker) while Anthony Miller plays the slot. Miller has to split slot snaps with tight end Jimmy Graham though so he doesn’t get a full workload.
RB: David Montgomery has this role to himself but he’s been terribly inefficient. At this point though who else do they have and who else do you have that is playing pretty much the whole game and getting almost all of the carries and passing work?
TE: Jimmy Graham played pretty much the same snap share he’s played all year - 21 inline snaps and 27 at WR (22 slot and 5 out wide). They inexplicably took him out in a red zone situation towards the end of the game where Foles threw a pick. Graham was connecting on endzone/redzone passes and the Bears were winning so it seems odd for them to go away from that. Graham ran 31 routes and Kmet was next closes with 12 so Kmet is still a dynasty stash despite increased usage.
WR: Per SharpFootballStats.com, there are two teams that have three or more wide receivers on the field for 85% of the snaps so far this year. The Bengals are one. If you have been following this series then you probably know the other - if not then you’ll find out a little farther down in the article. The bottom line here is that you can count on AJ Green and Tee Higgins to be other there on the outsides with Tyler Boyd in the slot on most plays.
RB: There was some concern that, with Joe Mixon out, Gio Bernard wouldn’t get the full role with Samaje Perine taking some of the work (especially on run downs). Perine got 1 carry. As long as Mixon is out, Gio is a start.
TE: Drew Sample is out there nearly every play. He still blocked on 7 pass snaps which isn’t ideal but, in a high volume game, he did manage some plays. The problem is that he’s the 5th weapon on the team and he’s not particularly athletic so there’s no reason to use him unless there is a tragic emergency.
WR: With John Brown out again, the Bills reverted back to the setup with Stefon Diggs at split end, Gabriel Davis at flanker, and Cole Beasley at slot. John Brown is expected to return - when healthy, Diggs and Brown typically play almost the entire game with Gabriel and Beasley splitting snaps at the slot. So, if you are sitting there thinking Beasley is a “safe” option, beware of this trend.
RB: Anddddd its back. The Nightmare Split. Earlier this year before injuries the work was split directly down the middle for these two backs. Singletary played extra snaps but he also spent extra snaps pass blocking. If you look at the snaps that truly matter for fantasy, Singletary ran 19 routes and had 8 carries while Moss ran 18 routes and had 7 carries. Nightmare.
TE: Dawson Knox tested positive for COVID. It seems that how sick you get affects how long you are out - some guys who actually get sick like Corey Davis miss multiple weeks. Other with no symptoms like Cam Newton miss minimal time. No one wants to talk about it, but some guys like the Jaguars Ryquell Armstead experience serious symptoms and are looking like they will miss the season. Tyler Kroft will take the bulk of the work in his absence but the return of John Brown might make targets thin.
|Odell Beckham Jr.||WR||2||3.8%|
WR: The biggest injury news of the week was obviously Odell Beckham Jr. tearing his ACL. With Jarvis Landry in the slot, that leaves two positions to be filled on the outside. People maybe be jumping to grab Rashard Higgins and Donovan Peoples-Jones who played the snaps this week but, if people remember, it was actually Khadarell Hodge who was getting the third most snaps back in the first three weeks when everyone was healthy. Rashard Higgins was a healthy scratch in weeks 3 and 4. Hodge returns from the IR this week and returns to practice. Since he beat out both of them for snaps at the start of the season, he actually might be the sneaky add.
RB: Kareem Hunt dominated the snap share even more this week than last time. It’s his show until Chubb returns.
TE: So here’s the interesting situation. We didn’t like Austin Hooper because he was third on the target totem pole. However, with Odell out, second target is now up for grabs. With Hooper out until likely after the bye, Harrison Bryan becomes an interesting spot start with Hooper being a decent IR stash.
|Ronald Jones II||RB||31||43.1%|
WR: There was no news after the game but apparently Chris Godwin broke his finger and will be out week 8. Mike Evans will be out there playing split end as usual. Typically Tyler Johnson has filled in for Godwin and should once again this week but Antonio Brown has officially been added to the roster and will be available moving forward. For this week at least, Evans is a safe play with Johnson probably being the next safest. Once AB joins the team, all bets are off as there have been a number of stories that suggest Brady LOVES playing with Brown. This story, for instnace, suggest the Patriots asked Tom Brady to stop throwing it to AB in practice because they were ruining practice. AB scored in their only game together.
TE: This is now back to back weeks with a full snap share, 8 targets, 5 catches, and a TD for Gronk. He’s looking pretty reliable at this point.
|Melvin Gordon III||RB||46||59.9%|
WR: Tim Patrick looked fantastic this week but, as the trend has been, he was also injured on the day. We are still waiting on news on the hamstring injury so make sure to keep an eye out. In his absence they would use a combination of KJ Hamler and DaeSean Hamilton along with Jeudy but clearly they also like the multi-tight end sets.
RB: We’ve talked about it previously but Phillip Lindsay grades out as one of the worst pass blockers in the league and cannot be trusted to pass block. Melvin Gordon pass blocked on 2 plays, 6 for Royce Freeman , and 9 for Lindsay. Despite the recent turmoil, Melvin dominated the snaps.
TE: Noah Fant returned and dominated the tight end snaps. He has top 5 upside given his usage. The Broncos used plenty of two tight end snaps (Vannett ran 9 routes to 18 for Okwughbunam) but neither were used heavily enough. Albert O is someone to keep an eye on if Patrick misses extended time.
WR: DeAndre Hopkins played the whole game. He is a must start every week obviously. Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald filled out most three wide sets - we like Kirk best given the routes he runs and his homerun hitting ability. Oddly enough, the Cardinals are using a blocking tight end in Darrell Daniels pretty often rather than a 4th WR which goes against the Air Raid mantra.
RB: Kenyan Drake suffered an injury in this game and is likely to miss some time which immediately and drastically boosts the value of Chase Edmonds . Though Jonathan Ward is next on the depth chart, fantasy fans want to see Eno Benjamin get some work.
WR: Remember in the Bengals write up when we said two teams used three or more WRs on 85% of their snaps this season? Well, if you guessed the Cowboys then you were right. They have been a nightmare since Dak got hurt but at least Amari, Gallup, and Lamb are playing the bulk of the snaps.
RB: Zeke’s usage is still ideal but this team just can’t get anything going. You likely can’t afford to bench him and the targets give him a decent floor so you’ll have to just stick with it unless you want to try to trade him.
TE: In the current iteration of this offense, Schultz is not to be trusted.
|Donald Parham Jr.||TE||18||21.4%|
WR: The Chargers had a fairly highly consolidated snap share this week among the pass catchers. A big part of that was likely the injury to blocking tight end Virgil Green which limited two tight end sets. Keenan Allen , Mike Williams , Jalen Guyton, and Hunter Henry played the vast majority of the snaps.
RB: The pass snaps were split fairly evenly (21 for Kelly to 22 for Jackson) though Kelley got almost three times the carries of Jackson. In positive game scripts, Kelley becomes much more viable given his prowess on the ground.
TE: See above in wide receiver section
WR: Sammy Watkins remained out. Demarcus Robinson picked up most of his work at split end. Tyreek Hill resumed his spot in the slot. Oddly enough, Byron Pringle played more than Mecole Hardman, presumably mostly on the outside. It seems Hardman truly is there as insurance for Tyreek Hill so it would take a Hill injury for him to shine.
RB: The work was split pretty evenly between CEH and Le’Veon Bell. 15 pass snaps (2 blocking) for CEH and 11 pass snaps (0 blocking) for Bell. CEH played 12 run plays (8 carries) and Bell played 6 (6 carries). Given that usage and the timeline, it seems that Bell was mostly used on plays that were specifically drawn up for him as he was not asked to block compared to 6 plays blocking for CEH. Will be interesting to see how the split evolves as his playbook expands.
TE: Kelce is a force. The other active tight ends on the roster, Deon Yelder and Nick Keizer , spend most of their limited time blocking with a combined 20 plays blocking and only 5 routes. If you have a dynasty league or a redraft league with deep benches and want to protect your Golden Goose as best as possible, the actual handcuff to Travis Kelce is likely a player who has been a healthy scratch many games: Ricky Seals-Jones .
WR: DeSean Jackson returned and promptly broke his ankle in a freak play. For now it seems like we can count on Travis Fulgham on the outside and Greg Ward on the inside playing slot. The other outside role should be populated by John Hightower and J.J. Arcega-Whiteside until Jalen Reagor returns (who just had his 21 day practice window opened).
RB: Miles Sanders was described as Doug Pederson as “day to day” meaning he has a chance to play this week vs. the Cowboys if he can practice on Thursday or Friday. Given how close the division is, it is possible but I wouldn’t bank on it. In his absence, Boston Scott played pretty much the entire role.
TE: We expected Richard Rodgers to block on a ton given his role in the offense and he did - he blocked on 35 plays including 11 pass plays. But the Eagles ran a league leading 81 offensive plays so he still ran 34 routes (Travis Fulgham ran an absurd 52). Given that Dallas Goedert is returning to practice and Zach Ertz will be returning soon as well, Rodgers is an expiring asset who has little long term value.
|Todd Gurley II||RB||52||70.3%|
WR: Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley played nearly the whole game on the outside as usually. Typically Russell Gage plays the slot but he quietly seemed to have dinged up his knee per reports. If he can’t go, Brandon Powell is his replacement in the slot and could be a deep play in DFS.
RB: Todd Gurley played double the snaps of Hill on pass plays and out-rushed him 24 carries to 2. The job is Gurley’s.
TE: Another week of ideal usage for Hayden Hurst running 40 routes and only pass blocking twice. This week the team ran 75 offensive plays and Russell Gage got banged up so the targets tricked all the way down to Hurst. In most weeks he’s an afterthought in this offense. Start him if you must but continue to look for your breakout tight end that will be in your playoff lineup. After a couple good outputs in a row you may be able to pair him with another player to get a top 5-6 TE off a struggling team.
WR: With Sterling Shepard fully healthy, it was Darius Slay ton and Sterling Shepard on the outside with Golden Tate in the slot. Tate’s slot were limited by having to split slot snaps with Evan Engram as well as leave the action for two tight end sets.
RB: Devonta Freeman was the man here but he suffered an ankle injury and has so far been a non-participant in practice. Wayne Gallman filled in and rushed valiantly in his absence. If Freeman is out, he’s worth flex consideration.
TE: Anyone who watched this game can only picture Evan Engram dropping that game sealing pass at the end. But, when you look under the covers, he once again had ideal usage for a tight end. His 50 snaps and 32 routes was second only to Darius Slay ton for pass catchers. NFLSavant.com, which tracks targets including ones called back for penalty, show him having 11 balls thrown his way. Tampa Bay is a tough matchup but you likely don’t have anyone else better to start. After TB he has WAS (7th worst vs. TE), PHI (5th worst), and CIN (2nd worst).
|D.J. Chark Jr.||WR||55||85.6%|
|Laviska Shenault Jr.||WR||47||73.1%|
WR: Dede Westbrook was put on season ending IR with an ACL but he wasn’t particularly relevant anyway. DJ Chark played primary outside (40 snaps split wide) while Keelan Cole and Laviska Shenault split time in the slot and at flanker with each of them playing 20+ snaps in the slot.
RB: 57 snaps out of 63 for James Robinson. What an absolute fantasy ASSET.
TE: With Eifert out, James O’Shaughnessy played the bulk of the TE snaps. You’d need to be in rough shape or a really deep league to need to utilize either but, if Eifert is out again, O’Shaughnessy could be a low owned contrapuntal play in DFS.
|Chris Herndon IV||TE||31||54.4%|
WR: Jamison Crowder has been the reliable player in this offense but he was out with a groin injury. It’s still yet to be seen if he will return. In his absence, Breshard Periman and Denzel Mims manned the outsides while Braxton Berrios was in the slot. Mims is the most interesting to us out of the bunch given he is the great unknown as a 2nd round rookie who hasn’t played much.
RB: Frank Gore “started” and got half the carries but La’Mical Perine got all the pass work. Given this usage Perine probably should be rostered.
TE: Chris Herndon wasn’t viable before and now he’s splitting snaps with Ryan Griffin . Look elsewhere for your fantasy tight end needs.
|Marvin Jones Jr.||WR||55||88.4%|
WR: Same as we’ve seen the last few weeks. Golladay and Jones outside, Amendola in the slot. Amendola comes out for two tight end sets. There were some rumors swirling regarding a Marvin Jones Jr. trade - if that were the case, our money would be on rookie Quintez Cephus taking that other outside role given he filled in for the injured Kenny Golladay on the other side.
RB: The backfield is still split though D’Andre Swift earned himself the a bigger slice of the pie. Here is how the usage broke down. Routes Run: Swift 17, Johnson 11, Peterson 6. Carries: Peterson 12, Swift 10, Kerryon 0. The fear is that Matt Patricia may be trying to emulate the Patriots backfield (he did make them switch to the modified Erhardt Perkins system the Patriots use). If that were the case then Swift = James White , Peterson = Sony (or Damien Harris), and Kerryon = Rex Burkhead . For now, Swift is the guy to own and you just pray they aren’t doing that.
TE: Hock ran 30 routes, only pass blocked on 2. Jesse James ran 6 routes and pass blocked on 3. Hock is a pretty solid play at a back end TE1 with week to week top 5 TE upside. Golladay, Marvin Jones , and Amendola are all free agents this offseason so next year is when he has a better shot at being a high end TE1.
|Equanimeous St. Brown||WR||3||4.9%|
WR: Good lord, it was the Davante Adams show. You might not have even noticed but Marquez Valdes-Scantling lined up on the other side for nearly the same snaps. Darrius Shepherd operated out of the slot but they used enough multi-tight end sets for him to not have relevance.
RB: With Aaron Jones out, Jamaal Adams took the full workload. The rookie AJ Dillon merely popped in to spell him from time to time.
TE: Many (not us) predicted the Robert Tonyan breakout might continue but he only played half the snaps. Marcedes Lewis tied him though Tonyan ran 21 routes and Lewis only ran 11. Still, If Davante Adams is running 34 routes, you want your fantasy tight end running ~30, not ~20. Sternberger also mixed in for some snaps though only ran 6 routes.
WR: As usual here, DJ Moore and Robby Anderson were your every down players on the outside. Curtis Samuel was a little banged up coming into the week and he ceded some snaps to Seth Roberts . You hopefully weren’t starting him anyway.
RB: There’s no question Mike Davis is the guy right now. The only question is what the split might be like with CMC back. It’s a short week this week so Davis should still get a decent workload even if CMC somehow does go.
TE: Ian Thomas has decent usage but tight end simply is not a focal point of this offense. Not as of now.
WR: N’Keal Harry got popped by Tarvarius Moore and went to the locker room to be evaluated. Damiere Byrd played his typical outside role and Jakobi Meyers filled in for Harry. Edelman played the slot, per usual.
RB: James White missed practice Wednesday and Thursday and only logged 10 snaps. That should increase this week, likely at the expense of Rex Burkhead . Given the Bills D, I’d only consider White an option and only in PPR formats.
|Henry Ruggs III||WR||49||75.4%|
RB: Jacobs is the man here - the rest of them just mix in to spell him and are not worth starting unless Jacobs is injured.
TE: Darren Waller played more snaps than any of the position players but he oddly didn’t have a great week in terms of usage. He only ran 32 routes compared to 37 and 35 for Agholar and Ruggs, respectively. That’s because he was asked to stay in and block on 12 pass plays. Something to keep in mind vs. teams with a heavy pass rush. He still hauled in 6 for 50 yards and a TD because he’s that good.
WR: Woods (30 slot snaps) and Kupp (39) continued the new trend of splitting time in the slot. Though the big surprise this week came from Josh Reynolds on the outside (44 snaps wide, 8 in the slot) as he had the best day of the three of them. It seems he’s earned the role Brandin Cooks used to occupy.
RB: Last week Malcom Brown played more pass snaps while Henderson had more run snaps. This week Henderson had more of everything running 18 routes to 16 for Brown and getting 16 carries to 10. Cam Akers is effectively phased out for now.
TE: Tyler Higbee was a late scratch so Johnnu Mundt took his place as the blocking tight end - running 14 routes and blocking on 5 pass plays. Gerald Everett ran 21 routes and scored himself a touchdown. Everett is trending up but he’s still stuck behind Woods, Kupp, and possibly even Reynolds in the target pecking order.
TE: The snaps look fairly even for the tight ends at 34, 30, and 28 but the usage was not. Jared Cook essentially played WR, playing 22 snaps out wide and 12 in-line. Cook ran 23 routes, Trautman ran 9, and Josh Hill ran 1. Cook isn’t a bad start when Thomas is out and Trautman is a dynasty stash.
WR: Lockett and Metcalf. That is all.
RB: This is a bit of a mess here. Chris Carson sprained his foot and is “week to week”. Carlos Hyde has been dealing with a hamstring injury that’s kept him limited in practice. Travis Homer has a knee contusion. That leaves DeeJay Dallas as the only fully healthy RB. Hard to trust anyone as a start on your team unless you have no choice.
TE: The reason a third WR didn’t see much work is the Seahawks heavily featured two tight end sets. With 37 routes to 30, you still want Olsen of the two but he’s still the third fiddle in terms of targets.
|Benny Snell Jr.||RB||6||7.6%|
WR: We told you last week the snap crunch was coming. Well we got our results and it looks like James Washington is the odd man out. Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool played the outside with Juju in the slot.
RB: James Conner played 66 of 79 snaps. That’s about as full of an RB workload as you see.
|Duke Johnson Jr.||RB||20||29.4%|
|Will Fuller V||WR||67||98.5%|
RB: On the first Texans possession it was 3rd and 1. They gave the ball to Duke Johnson and he ran sideways, losing a yard. He should not have done that. He did not get another handoff. 16 of his snaps were pass plays but David Johnson played 36 pass plays and got 14 handoffs.
TE: As long as Jordan Akins is out, Fells is an alright play. If you must start one of them when Akins is back, it should be Akins.
WR: The Titans finally had all three wide receivers and they were deployed as expected. Corey Davis and A.J. Brown were your outside guys and Adam Humphries was in the slot. Humphries came out for two tight end sets.
RB: Derrick Henry ..
TE: Last week we explained why Anthony Firkser wasn’t a good start, even with Jonnu Smith out. If you didn’t have a chance to read it, I implore you to scroll down to the Titans section of this article as it might give you a better idea of how this offense operates. With all three WRs healthy and Taylor Lewan out, we expect Jonnu Smith to be asked to block more than ever upon his return which limits his upside.
Washington Football Team
WR: Perhaps the WFT is holding WR tryouts at this point because, after Dontrelle Inman had played the bulk of the snaps previously, Cam Sims led the entire WR group in snaps this week. Terry McLaurin is a staple and, with the amount of WR snaps Logan Thomas plays, there isn’t much room for a third WR.
RB: Antonio Gibson is the running down back and J.D. McKissic is the passing down back. In a positive game script game, Gibson got 20 carries (though McKissic technically played more snaps). In negative game script games, you will see more McKissic.
TE: Logan Thomas played 25 snaps at WR again. Given the tight end landscape, he needs to be owned.